Unseasonal bloom due to warm weather might open Asia's largest tulip garden in second week of March this year, a departure of 20 days from the routine.
"The ideal temperature is around 15-16 degrees for the proper budding and blooming of tulips, but this season Kashmir has witnessed temperature 20 degrees above, which advanced the early blooming of most of the flower varieties, including tulips," said Imran Ahmad, Assistant Floriculture Officer and In-charge Tulip Garden.
Located on the foothills of the Zabarwan hills and overloking the picturesque Dal Lake, tulip garden has become the major attraction for local as well as outside visitors in the early spring.
Around 2000 bulbs have already bloomed and few other tulip varieties are showing advanced budding stage, said Ahmad.
"In last few years, we have witnessed first April an ideal time for opening of garden, but this time, it will be some 20 days in advance," he said.
However, early blooming has added to concerns of the officials as they believe the phenomenon might affect the lifespan of the flowers.
"We normally used to witness snowfall as well as heavy rains with minimal temperature in the month of February, but this winter surprised us all and it was like late March in Kashmir during the month of February, which is a cause of concern," said a senior floriculture officer, who requested anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to press.
"Usually, tulip bulbs have 15-17 days of life, this time if the weather remains hot with no rainfall, the lifespan may reduce," he warned.